Thursday, May 18, 2017

Let's Talk: Protagonist

Hello everyone! How’s everyone’s week been? Well I hope you’ve been having a good week, if not maybe we will just take your problems and… “FEED THEM TO THE FIRE ANTS!”-Tim Hawkins. (click on his name to see the video)

   So I been wanting to do another “Let’s Talk” ever since I published the first one. If you don’t know what I mean by “Let’s Talk” it is where I basically ask a question, give some thoughts on it, then ask you to answer it. I did this with my Hey Christian Let’s Talk: Doctor Strange (I'll admit it wasn't my greatest work ever) and since it’s number 2 on my Popular Posts list I though “hey let’s do another one.” So, Let’s Talk: Protagonist.

   Now chances are you’re probably a writer or aspiring author. And as a writer, or aspiring author, you will have to deal with The protagonist sooner or later. So, my question is… What is your favorite kind of Protagonist?

   I like to think about protagonist like leaves, no two leaves are exactly alike but they all grow from the same tree. So in one scenes we can group them into broad groups that allows for flexibility within them while still holding onto a certain starting point. Oh, and just as a warning, the names I use to describe these groups may not be their proper names so just roll with it (if you know the proper name please tell me!).

So, first up we got…

The Monster Protagonist!

    These are the guys who for whatever reason have a dark past. They are hunted by something, and because of whatever it is they view themselves as monsters, or something like a monster. They want to change, to be different, but they just can’t escape the raging animal on the inside. They try to fight off the animal on the inside but they can’t seem to escape it, and they often find themselves lost to it. There is more to the Monster then just that thought, they often are longing for something. Something like a family, love, or just friends. And even if they find what they are longing for they feel like they can’t hold onto it because of the monster within that is just waiting to get out. That thing within them is what they hate most of all, and it is also their darkest joy.

    They are such fun protagonist; they usually have a façade, a mask, they throw up to keep people away or to be accepted. For the most part they manifest and display anger. Under that though they are really caring. But the moment when someone threatens whatever it is they are longing for they will do anything, go to any length, to protect it. Even if it means letting the monster out, which often makes the person they are protecting reject them.

Second we have the...

The Wounded Animal Protagonist!
    Like the Monster, the Wounded Animal is just like its name sake. They are hurt, sacred, in pain, and prone to lashing out in defense. These protagonists often have lost something, or someone, they cared for (hence the wound). Because of that lose they become like a wounded animal. So, they wonder about aimlessly seeking whatever they need at that time. Like a wounded animal they try to keep people away, they push people away. They often show little to no emotion, and are very skeptical about new things/people. But on the inside they long for healing. For the pain to stop.

   When done right these protagonists can be heartbreakers. Because they honestly loved something/someone but then it was taken from them. And all they have, besides whatever abilities they possess, is the pain of that lose. The Monster can be combined with the Wounded Animal to make a beautifully pain filled protagonist who thinks it’s best to just be left alone. That why no one they care about will be hurt. (Sound familiar? Can anyone guess who I’m talking about? I’ll give you a hint, his well-known name starts with H.)

Next up to bat is…

The Smiling Protagonist!
   This Protagonist is the kind of guy who has reached the top. He has conquered every challenge and mastered all aspects of himself (whether that be an extraordinary abilities and/or merely physical abilities). He knows he can win any fight and the is displayed in his over the top self confidence. They are usually cocky guys who wear a smirk whenever they are challenged. Why? Because they are just that good. When you reach the top, you live a carefree life because your the best and that’s what this protagonist likes. Sure, he’ll let you hit him a couple times to make you feel better, but you know it’s all over for you when you see that smile.

  I usually like to see this kind of protagonist pared up with super strength. But I don’t like to see him too often. The reason is because without being mixed with another kind of emotion or backstory as to why he’s become the best he is rather a pain character.

And finally…

The Hopeful/Goal Protagonist!
    This protagonist is the guy who is always hopeful, who can see the good in almost anything. He has a spring in his step and a tune in his heart. He is shooting for a goal. He is traveling with a destination in mind. This is not to say they don’t go through painful experiences, because they do. But they just have that tendency to stay hopeful. They have a goal they want to reach. And they will push themselves past their limit to reach that goal.

    These kinds of protagonist are fun as well. When done right they can be rather enjoyable. For is it not fun to watch/read about someone who is running to a goal and who doesn’t give up the hope of reaching it?

So, that’s four of my favorite kind of male protagonist. Now I’m not saying that these are the only kinds of Protagonist out there. Or that each of these groups must say separated. I think a great protagonist is one in which the author takes the time to create a character with his/her own personality. And that protagonist may have aspects from every category. After all, as writers/authors we are trying to create a character that feels human. And humans can't really be categorized (personality wise). So now I’ll leave the question up to you. What is your favorite kind of protagonist? Can you describe it?
And until next time, Stay True to the King!
Pictures and gifs used are not my own and neither to I clam them as such. All cried goes to their rightful owners/creators.


  1. I think that the Wounded Animal and Monster, or even better a combination of the two, are my favorite types of protagonist to read about. Quite a few of my favorite fictional characters fit into these two categories. :) Occasionally, though, I will read a book with a "perfect" character, a character who has had a solid past and always makes the right choices, and enjoy it because it's nice sometimes to read about a strong character who isn't torn by inner demons.

    I thought you were talking about Jace, actually, until you said his name started with an H. Who is it?

    Also, I thought the Doctor Strange post was fine, and I enjoyed discussing it. :)

    1. Hey Anonymous! Yeah I think the Wounded Animal and Monster (or even a combination) are in my top 5 for sure. Aaahhh yes the "perfect" Character, I have to say I don't come across them every often (or at lest in the stuff I read). But yeah I can see how that kind of character can be enjoyable.

      I guess Jace could if the Wounded Animal, But I was thinking about the Hulk. Much of his backstory hasn't been shown in the movies but I think he is a pretty good combination of Wounded Animal and Monster.

      Why Thank you, I enjoyed discussing it as well! I know I say this a lot but I love hearing what others have to say about such subject even if we don't agree.

      Thanks for commenting!

  2. I like the Wounded Animal protagonist, in moderation. While reading your description, I realized some of my own characters fell into that category.

    But I think my favourite would have to be the Hopeful Protagonist, or something along those lines. When the character has been through so much already, knows there's more (and worse) things to come, wants (and needs) a break, and still pushes forward, with his eye on the target.

    1. Hello Blue, thank you for stopping by and dropping a comment! I hope you enjoy your time on this blog!

      That's cool! Yeah that Hopeful Protagonist can be a very nice one indeed. I think it's cool to have a Wounded Animal and a Hopeful protagonist in the same story. If done right I think they make a great match.

  3. My favorite would probably be the Monster Protagonist, but the Wounded Animal Protagonist would be a very close second. I also enjoy a combination of the two. One of my characters is actually a combination, mostly Wounded Animal but there is Monster there too. He's also my favorite. :)

    Great post! I like these "Let's Talk" posts. :)

    1. Hey Karyssa! That's cool! Yeah those two are some of my favorites (That's why they where at the top of the list).

      Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed them!

  4. Great post! These are some of my favorites too! Especially when you find the odd combo like a Smiling protagonist coupled with the Wounded Animal type.

    1. Thanks! Oooo odd combos like that are super fun and make for some pretty good stories!

  5. Monster and Wounded Animal Protagonists all day long xD Some can be a little over done, but when you kinda twist them together, and maybe add a dash of the Smiling Protagonist... then you've got something! I personally have one like that (he's actually a main character, but not *the* protagonist).

    And I think there should be a subcategory for sarcastic protagonists, because those are my favorites xD

    Great post!

    audrey caylin

    1. True, the Monster and Wounded Animal protagonist can be over used sometime. Especially when people just copy. But that sounds like quite a fun protagonist (can't wait to see him!)

      I think the sarcastic can fall under the Smiling. :D Thanks Audrey

  6. Nice post. :) Of these, I'd say my favourite would be a mix betwen the Smiling one and the Wounded Animal one. Outside of this list, my faovurite male protagonist would probably be the strong, silent ones that have a past but are willing to overcome it with a realistic but good attitude. Not sure what I'd name that type. XD

    1. Thanks Raechel! That sounds like a great combination!

      OOoooo haven't really seen any protagonist like that but it sounds interesting. Ummmm... maybe the salmon ?

    2. Haha, yeah, I don't know if I've seen a ton of my idealist protagonist, but I think I've read some. Gotta ask though, who's the Salmon? Cuz, actually funny enough, a character that I think fits my fav protagonist is named Salmone, but I know that's not who you're talking about because I highly doubt you've read "Pearl in the Sand" by Tessa Afshar. ^.^

    3. Well I was thinking that it would fit since salmons swim upstream and don't give up.
      Yeah I've never read that book (until now I didn't even know it existed, or at lest I can't remember it)

    4. Ooooh, that makes sense. I should've known that's what you were talking about, but for some reason I thought maybe it was a superhero or something! ^.^
      It's a fantastic book and one of my most favourites, but might be boring to you. It's Biblical Fiction, about Rahab/the Wall of Jericho. :)

    5. hahaha it should be a superhero! Super Salmon! able to swim and get eaten by bears.... never mind 0.o

      That's great! yeah it doesn't really sound like my style of book but that doesn't change the fact that it sounds cool! (for you)


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